Technology takes Comet draft online

FOR many months of the year Comet is little more than a speck on the map halfway between Emerald and Blackwater, but this weekend that's all about to change.

The annual Comet River Cutting and Campdraft showcase is set to draw stock, horses and competitors from all over the country for the premier event.

Comet River Campdraft treasurer Susan Danastas said not much else came close to the quality of competition expected in town this weekend.

"It would be the second biggest cutting display in Australia and we've got six out the top 10 riders in Australia coming for the campdraft," Danastas said.

With a $15,000 futurity prize on offer, backed by the $8000 Vince Lucus Memorial Derby, it's easy to see why competitors travel from near and far for the Central Queensland event.

Susan said slowly but surely the jigsaw pieces were falling into place with over 1100 nominations in the campdraft alone.

"We started to walk the cattle in Wednesday morning and we've got people working everywhere," she said.

Luckily they have technology on their side.

For the first time in the event's history, the entire set-up is being run online through a new system called Campdraft Central.

"It's all internet based," campdraft president Matt Monds said.

"Program draws are sent out through SMS and registrations are done online."

He said gone were the days when someone would have to sit and field the nominations manually, with everything now done electronically.

"It's saved us from a thousand phone calls and it freed us up to get on with the rest of the set-up," Monds said.

Competition kicked off yesterday with the rounds continuing throughout today until Sunday. The cutting campdraft finals are set down for tomorrow night.

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